straightening tips of hair!

Okay, i know this might sound weird but well, i'm 15 years old with 3A type curly hair...
I find it easiest to either loosely fishtail plait my hair in the day time, clipping back my bangs, OR - this is the kinda weird bit - i sometimes push my hair to one side of my head and straighten the bottom 1 or 2 inches - it helps my hair become more controllable but still noticably curly.
I was wondering, does anyone else do this? or anything similar? and is there a better, heat-free alternative?
thank you!